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The Case For Closed Kitchens

Move along, move along, nothing to see here...

A recent Annals of Gastronomycolumn by Sadie Stein (no relation) in the New Yorker made the case against today's fashionable open kitchens.  Both Nancy Leson and I were in complete agreement. When we're cooking we be...alone.

The open kitchen design has a classy history having been pioneered by Frank Lloyd Wright for his 1934 Willey House in Minneapolis. But I don't care.  I don't like talking while I cook and having "help" is usually more work than doing everything myself.

Nancy feels the same only more strongly.  Possibly because she has a really small, "One butt" as she puts it, kitchen with no room to spare for visitors. 

Yet both our kitchens are open to the rest of the house.  Not to facilitate socializing but just because it's airier that way.

Credit Nancy Leson / KNKX
This way to Nancy's One Butt Room.

As I tell Nance, "I like an open kitchen.  As long as there's no one in it but me." 

How about you?

"I don't want to be alone.  I want to be left alone." – Audrey Hepburn

Dick Stein joined KNKX in January 1992. He retired in 2020 after three decades on air. During his storied radio career, he hosted the morning jazz show, co-hosted and produced "Food for Thought" with Nancy Leson and wrote and directed the Jimmy Jazzoid live radio musical comedies and 100 episodes of Jazz Kitchen.